The Weekly Waggle - Augusta
August 20, 2012
By Dan Daly
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Congratulations Sergio, you just won your first PGA Tour event in four years and literally no one in the golf world cares due to the breaking news announced when you were on the 18th hole. I'm starting to believe you really are cursed. About Time!
Somewhere Hootie Johnson just cried and Martha Burk's phone just exploded with the following sentence, "For the first time in its 80-year history, Augusta National Golf Club has female members." Welcome!
To pretty much put this in context, Jason Sobel tweeted the following, "In case you think ANGC (Augusta National Golf Club) officials aren't aware of the significance, know this: They've never issued a press release about new members before."
I had the privilege of spending some time with Condoleezza Rice some years back and she is an extremely intelligent woman with a passion for sports…football and golf being her two favorite. In fact, her dream job is to become the Commissioner of the NFL. She said her first order of business would be to get rid of all turf in stadiums. I can't disagree with that. She was also recently appointed to the U.S. Golf Association's nominating committee. She clearly knows and cares about sports.
Coincidentally enough, The Golf Channel recently asked a great question; besides The Masters, name another tournament you would like to see played at Augusta National.
Each person gave the politically correct response first, which was the LPGA US Open.
Frankly I was impressed they were able to get the answer out with a straight face. At least that was my initial reaction when I first heard them say it. However, in light of today's announcement…well, that still isn't going to happen.
I can see that conversation at the next Board Meeting:
Billy Payne: "Guys, Mike Whan called and asked if they could have a tournament here after he heard we were now admitting women."
Board: "Who the hell is Mike Whan?"
Billy: "Oh, he said he was the LPGA Commissioner?"
Board: "LOL, LOL, LOL, LOL, LOL. Seriously Billy, if you even take that phone call again you will be kicked out of the club immediately."
Look, this is a historic day for golf and women…at least in some people's eyes. I know it's not quite going to rank up there with Title IX or Rosa Parks or the legalization of women being able to vote, but it's a pretty big deal. With that said, admitting two female members and playing an LPGA event at Augusta are not even in the same galaxy.
Let me break down some things that would happen before Augusta National would host any LPGA golf event; Martha Burk becoming President of the United States, Hootie Johnson and Billy Payne nominating Hilary Clinton for President in 2016, Tiger Woods sleeping with a black girl, Texas A&M winning the SEC West, Gambling at Bushwood, Kevin Na playing 18 holes in under 4 hours, Ryan Tannehill and Tim Tebow as the starting quarterbacks in a Super Bowl, John Daly dropping Hooters and being sponsored by Souper Salad or someone shooting a final round 63 at Oakmont to win a US Open.
Like I said earlier, I, along with most people in the country are shocked Augusta has made it this far, but let's not get ahead of ourselves.
Regarding TGC question itself, "Besides The Masters, name another tournament you would like to see played at Augusta National." It's a great question. The two other answers they gave, after the (still) comical answer above, were the US Amateur and The Ryder Cup. Both are one-off events with a lot of history behind them that are played on rotating courses that have typically hosted a Major Championship. Throw in the fact that it would allow one more chance during the year for people to get to see Augusta in person and on TV and it's a win-win for everyone…except the Augusta National membership…and their vote is really the only one that matters.
As far as the US Amateur, I would say winning the Powerball Lottery odds are probably better. The media would have a heyday with it; playing the US Amateur Championship at the course Bobby Jones built in his home state, with the two finalists qualifying to return there for next year's Masters. Nothing about it wouldn't be awesome.
The biggest problem is the fact that you have over 300 players in the first two rounds playing to get into the match play portion and that just wouldn't fly with the boys in the green jackets. So it would have to be the Match Play portion only…but does anyone really care about the other part anyway?
As far as the Ryder Cup being played at Augusta National. Where do I stand in line for tickets to that?
I know it won't happen either, especially considering they are closed that time of year, but at least this one has a small chance due to the fact that it would be PGA Tour players who love the course and any chance they can get to play it, it's a very limited number of players, and The Ryder Cup carries exclusivity with it. Not sure if you're aware, but the boys at the end of Magnolia Lane like exclusivity…well, at least they use to.
Look, I know a tournament at Augusta outside of The Masters will never happen, and truth be told I kind of like that. Then again, I also "knew" that they would never have a female a member while I was alive…and now they have two. Not only that, after some extensive research, it turns out someone actually did shoot a final round 63 at Oakmont to win a US Open…so who knows?
Until Next Week,